Recent entries

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2451 Copy

    Spoolofwhool

    Aluminum in the cosmere cannot be Invested or generally affected by Investiture processes. The exception to this however is the Metallic Arts where aluminum can be burned, turned into a metalmind, or charged with Hemalurgy. Is this due to an exception in the normally Investiture-proof properties of aluminum specifically for the Metallic Arts? If so, what kind of Connection is there between the Metallic Arts and aluminum which allows this to occur?

    Brandon Sanderson

    RAFO 

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2454 Copy

    B1G_If_True_

    Is there any updated news on a 10 year anniversary (Hero of Ages?) leather bound book for the holidays?

    Do you plan on doing the leather bound books for works outside the Cosmere as well in the future?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Just that the printer is suffering (another) delay. (I think this might be our third printer, so I'm not sure if we are unlucky, or if this is just how the business works.) We sent it in back in August, but still haven't seen the books. Hopefully they'll come while I'm out on tour, for a December release.

    We are thinking we might do Steelheart when it comes around. So there's a chance. We'll see where we sit once Warbreaker is out.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2456 Copy

    CoverYourSafeHand

    Where do spheres come from in Stormlight? Is there a giant factory somewhere that turns gemhearts into spheres?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It's similar to mints in various kingdoms on Earth. They're made by different regional powers, and sometimes there are exchange issues because of it--but since Roshar had some unique forms of societal unification in the past, a lot of things like this got standardized.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2457 Copy

    WeiryWriter

    Is there an important reason why Lukel is the only character of Aonic descent in Elantris whose name is not based around an Aon? (Since "u" does not feature in any Aon.)

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, but it's more social than magical. Like when I ran across someone in Korea named Moses, and it was so interesting linguistically compared to other more traditional names.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2459 Copy

    WeiryWriter

    So in a recent conversation I brought up the relationship between the names of Urithiru and Ur (the ancient Mesopotamian city-state), in retrospect I realized that I was treating the similarity of names as a given but I don't think you have ever been asked about it. Was the reference intentional on your part from the outset (i.e. starting with the idea to reference Ur), or did it arise coincidentally as you played with the linguistics of Roshar (i.e. stumbling across the "ur-" syllable and going "I can work with that!")?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Ur was part of it, certainly. But it was more the second--I was playing with things, and liked the feeling of Ur in part because of the ancient our-world references.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2463 Copy

    XavierRDE

    I've seen you said you sent the same scene description to both the US and the UK publisher for Oathbringer's cover. Why choose precisely Jasnah?

    Brandon Sanderson

    It's partially based on the scene I think that will look best being illustrated. Also, since book two had Kaladin, I thought it would be a nice change to make sure someone else was on book three.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2466 Copy

    Calderis

    The light lines/lances are a very fun concept. Is there anything in particular that inspired the idea of grappling combat in space?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Probably watching too many cartoons or B movies where someone turns a corner in a vehicle by throwing out an anchor or something. (Didn't the batmobile do this once in the old Adam West batman?)

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2469 Copy

    Oversleep

    Does it matter how fast are the metals burned in relation to Seeking? For example, would a flared metal be easier to Seek? Could duraluminum burned metal be Seeked through coppercloud by regular Seeker?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Flaring is noticeable to the right Seeker, and strength does correlate as you theorize.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2470 Copy

    Oversleep

    What does count for Hemalurgic control? The total Hemalurgic charge or number of the spikes? If we let four spikes decay for a few years and then pierce a human with it, would that person be controllable? Does that work the same for all Hemalurgic constructs?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Good question to be asking, as there are spikes that come in sets that only count as a single one... I'd say you're getting close, but not quite there.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2471 Copy

    Oversleep

    This is a follow-up on something I asked you in person last year. What is the bronzepulse of atium? They thought that it shares pattern with gold so I guess there would be some resemblance between those patterns? Also, did it Push or Pull, or something else even (like those uniform pulses Ruin's avatar set off)? Cause I can't help but wonder why did they not notice something very odd about it. And, well, what pulse would even atium alloys have?

    Brandon Sanderson

    RAFO

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2472 Copy

    Oversleep

    I'm liking Skyward so far. I can't wait to read about using light-lances, they're rusting cool!

    I gotta ask, though: what does "scud" mean? It seems it is an equivalent of "damn" but is there any etymology behind it? Cause, "scud" is also name of Soviet tactical ballistic missiles. Any relation?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Scud came from the Soviet missile, as a nod to some of my inspirations for the setting of the caverns.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2473 Copy

    RoboChrist

    Would humanity be better or worse off by the end of Oathbringer if Honor ended his visions with:

    "This has been a pre-recorded message from Honor. If you have any inquiries, please direct them to the Stormfather or to a local spren representative."

    Brandon Sanderson

    Dial 9 to refill with Stormlight. 

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2476 Copy

    InsaneScotsman

    During the perpendicularity scene in Oathbringer is it safe to say that what Dalinar did is akin to super powered versions of his surges? Tension to make the realms ductile and formable, adhesion to bring them together. I know the specific ability is unique to Dalinar but I'm fairly attached to this rationalization

    Brandon Sanderson

    I wouldn't immediately shoot down this particular theory. 

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2477 Copy

    Rgkavodkar

    If you have two written books, Book-A and Book-B, and you are prouder of Book-B, does it feel weird if Book-A is more popular and better received?

    Brandon Sanderson

    I know this does happen to writers, but I've not really experienced it. Generally, if I write something a little more niche, I'm aware ahead of time. (And am doing it on purpose.) I also don't tend to be "more proud" of certain books--I write a wide variety of things because I'm interested in a wide variety of story types.

    But I guess I'm also comfortable with the idea that a lot of work does not equal a successful piece. I, of course, would prefer to write things that everyone loves--but I learned early in my unpublished career not to chase the market, and that attitude has served me quite well.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2478 Copy

    Rgkavodkar

    Any chance you would venture into a non-fantasy genre in the future?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, there's a chance--but fantasy casts a wide shadow. I had a really interesting idea for a horror story the other week, but it's still a fantasy technically.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2480 Copy

    -lurcher-

    "Ghostbloods" is an interesting name to me. Is that a name that originated on Roshar or somewhere else? Does the group have to do either with ghosts or blood? Or is it more a metaphorical name?

    Brandon Sanderson

    The name of the Ghostbloods has roots in specific cosmere events, and means something in world.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2481 Copy

    -lurcher-

    At the end of Oathbringer, it seems that many (including myself) felt that Szeth's return and sudden alignment with the protagonists went over a little too easily. Are they accepting of him now? Why the sudden change of heart? Are there going to be trust issues in the future?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Uh, yeah. Obviously crazy men who shift allegiances quickly, after murdering the king and starting a war, aren't exactly the sort you leave home to babysit your kids.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2485 Copy

    Askhundel

    Do you think once you're done with the Cosmere's main story (assumably Mistborn 4th era), if you're not tired of it by then, you might write more stories set in the cosmere (for added lore/backstory/immersion) ?

    Brandon Sanderson

    In this perfect world where I somehow manage to finish early, then yes, I'd certainly do more. But that's a LONG ways off still.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2486 Copy

    FieryXJoe

    Would empty perfect gemstones left in Shinovar and New Natanatan during a highstorm have different amounts of Stormlight?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Excellent question.

    No, they would not. Strength of the storm is not tied directly to the amount of Stormlight invested. (Though there are in-world easterners who would insist otherwise.)

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2489 Copy

    simon_thekillerewok

    What percent confident are you that Mistborn 2.4 will be named The Lost Metal? In that same vein, what percent confident are you that Stormlight 5 will be named Stones Unhallowed? (I think that's a fantastic title btw and you should definitely keep it.)

    Brandon Sanderson

    I'm probably around 95% on Lost Metal and 70% on Stones Unhallowed.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2490 Copy

    wiresegal

    Are most kandra comfortable in any body configuration, or is MeLaan being comfortable in any gendered body an outlier? (i.e. do female kandra usually prefer female bodies, etc). And if this is common among kandra, is it because their long lives lead to introspection and self-examination, or is it just part of the species psychology?

    Also, it's mentioned that kandra can "smell" whether another kandra is male or female, biologically. Does a transgender kandra have a different "scent?" What about nonbinary? And if they don't smell different, can they change what they "smell" like? (without using any magic beyond their shapeshifting)

    Brandon Sanderson

    You find a lot more kandra like MeLaan in the later generations. Generations who were allowed to develop a stronger, independent kandra culture separate from always being integrated with human culture. However, I'd say that almost every kandra, by nature of their physiology, spends a good time exploring both genders. I wouldn't call MeLaan an outlier.

    Kandra learn very extreme control over their bodies, and can choose which scent to express and which gender (even to other kandra) to present. This includes a neutral scent, or some mix or something new, if they so decide. Remember that a kandra who wants to hide who they are, even from other kandra, is fully capable of doing so. Under current in-world technology, even blood tests would not be able to distinguish a kandra from the form they have decided to take.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2491 Copy

    wiresegal

    In post-medallion-tech Scadrial, (i.e. Era 3) is there any cultural awareness of transgender people? Since for some, their biological state would be affected by Feruchemical gold healing, and that would probably be a documented effect.

    Brandon Sanderson

    The different cultures and subcultures are going to look at this differently, but I'd say yes, there is awareness. And the more they experiment with the metallic arts being available outside of genetic lines, the more this will be understood for reasons you point out.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2495 Copy

    argau

    I was delighted to read in the forward to Arcanum Unbounded that the Cosmere was inspired by Isaac Asimov’s Robots/Foundation universe. Elijah, Daneel, Hari, and Dors are some of my favorite characters ever, but I was horribly disappointed by Foundation and Earth, our de facto endpoint for the series. Since you were so kind as to step in and finish Wheel of Time after Robert Jordan’s death, have you ever considered writing anything in the Robots/Foundation universe to bring us to a more satisfying ending?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Though I too had mixed feelings about Foundation and Earth, I have come around on it over the years--and like a lot of things about it. The ultimate evolution and implementation of the three laws being one of them.

    I think every fan of the series has to come to terms with the differences between the two eras of Asimov's writing life, and the different themes of the two different "halves" of the Foundation series. Though I do prefer the tight early narratives, I can appreciate the more philosophical approach of the late narratives.

    I could see myself contributing to a themed anthology of Asimov-inspired or in universe stories, should one happen. But I don't ever see myself doing anything like you mention, in part because Asimov had collaborators he worked with that have already been doing things like continue his legacy--and who are much better suited to it.

    Skyward Pre-Release AMA ()
    #2496 Copy

    NotOJebus

    If I held Szeth's Oathstone, smashed it up into a fine powder then snorted it, would Szeth still follow my direction?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Yes, probably, but be warned that you're not dealing with someone terrible stable. You could push Szeth over the edge with things like this, and then you could end up in a very bad situation.

    The Great American Read: Other Worlds with Brandon Sanderson ()
    #2497 Copy

    Questioner

    Did you know from the beginning how you were planning to end [Alcatraz]? Because the whole time, I was going, "He'd better fulfill all of these promises."

    Brandon Sanderson

    I was. I'll tell you this, when I pitched that to the editor, they did not like it at all. They didn't like the idea of me ending on such a downer note. But I knew that the right way to do it was to have him give up on the series after that dark moment. A lot of the Alcatraz stuff I discovery wrote, but that ending I had from the beginning.

    The Great American Read: Other Worlds with Brandon Sanderson ()
    #2498 Copy

    Questioner

    How much time do you spend writing new material versus rewrites?

    Brandon Sanderson

    Rewrites are about half of my time I'd say. Between a third and a half. So I can usually budget the same amount of time that it took to write a book to do the revisions, and each given one is a bit faster. I write at about 2,000 words a day and I revise at about 10,000 words a day, but it goes slower when I have to do new chapters. Like, I'll do 10,000 words one day, and then 2,000 the next when I have to do new stuff.